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Developing a Cluster for Clean Coal Technologies (CCT) and Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) Technologies for the Indian Thermal Power Sector

In Partnership with : Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL)
Project financed by The European Union
India has the most compelling case for coal dependence for power generation. On the one hand, India has 10% of global coal reserves and is the third largest coal mining nation in the world today, while on the other, India’s power requirement by 2030 is estimated to be 9,50,000 MW against the installed generation capacity of 1,59,648.49 MW as on 30th April, 2010. A near 6 fold increase is envisaged in the next 20 years with a targeted growth of over 9% annually. With the depletion of hydro energy, thermal power from coal-based power plants, provides the best possible and unavoidable solution for meeting this demand. In addition to the indigenous coal production, it is also estimated that India would be relying on coal imports of the order of 800 million tonnes, annually. While the coal energy generation share of the world is 20.3%, India’s coal share of energy generation now stands at 55%. Similarly, while the coal share of carbon emission of the globe is 41.2%, India’s coal share of carbon emission is 69.78%. For every tonne of fossil fuel burnt, at least three quarters of a tonne of carbon, is released. It is estimated that 800 to 900 kgs /hr CO2 is emitted per MW in Indian power plants. So, coal based power plants are indeed, seething CO2 emission volcanoes, which need to be quenched or subdued as much as possible, atleast in India. Added to this, are the poor quality of Indian coal and the abundance of its availability, that demand efficient clean coal technologies, for more healthy and energy efficient environment.
India has taken a very responsible and balancing stand on the CO2 emission issue. It has committed to reduce its CO2 emissions by 20 to 25% from its 2005 level, which is a great challenge, considering the fact that the per capita consumption of power needs of India is very low and its per capita CO2 emission is 20 times lesser than US and other developed countries. So, the proposed project is a technology response initiative, to assist the Government of India’s CO2 emission reduction ambitions, by promoting, demonstrating, developing, leveraging the clean coal and carbon capture and storage technologies through capacity building, knowledge generation and exchange, networking to access international expertise, demonstration and deployment initiatives and sustainability through innovation and incubation. Geographical and organizational concentration of the major CO2 emission centres, the coal based thermal power plants, provide an easy target for designing and deploying a suitable mitigation strategy development for surmounting the CO2 emission problem. However, skill sets, knowledge resources, policy supports and scaffolds remain fragmented and so, create road blocks. Developing a cluster of different skill sets, resource centres, decision making bodies, knowledge generation and exchange platforms, interest groups, development agents will provide necessary impetus to Clean Coal Technologies and Carbon Capture and Storage initiatives. With the compelling demand for power and the mainstream rush for energy, it needs a dedicated vanguard of actions for mitigating CO2 emissions.

The Project:

The project aims to develop and deploy a dedicated technology cluster for CCT and CCS, inclusive of main players in thermal power industry, policymakers, academic, international expert networks, etc, shall emerge as one of the beacons for the future for the CCT- CCS technology initiatives of the Indian thermal power industries.
Overall Objective:
The main objective of the proposed action is to promote a cluster on Clean Coal Technologies (CCT) and Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) in order to enable increased awareness, capabilities, development actions, innovation and sustainable initiatives, to effectively address the environmental responsibilities, commitments and ambitions of the Indian thermal power sector.
Specific Objectives:
• To nucleate, launch and manage a vibrant cluster of complementary players, resources and skills, focusing on CCT and CCS technologies, in the Indian thermal power sector,
• To reach out to international expertise, knowledge, skills and resources, continuously, to address the project aims more effectively,
• To improve awareness and skills of the major power sector players, general public and the government in CCT and CCS technology areas and to secure supports and constituency for the intended project aims,
• To demonstrate, disseminate and deploy, focused CCT and CCS technologies in project mode for replication and field usage,
• To develop dedicated publicity, advocacy and action triggers to bring out policy, knowledge, skills and resource commitment to various other constituents in Indian thermal power sector,
• To mine innovation and entrepreneurial venture pursuits in CCT and CCS technologies, to usher in niche applications, sustainability and more effective implementation and
• To leverage and showcase the project improvements to much larger audience inorder to improve the catchment areas for environmental initiatives and their benefits, in a sustainable manner, in the future.

By bringing together the power majors, including decision making bodies and policy makers, with a focused set of cluster development actions, aiming at awareness, training, benchmarking, international network development, the proposed project aims to impact the decision making in India, favourably, to reduce the level of CO2 emissions and other pollutants, to the planned requirements. Promoting innovative clean tech dedicated start-ups engaged in CCS and CCT, adds to the sustainability and effective implementation of the project aim. Seed funding these start-ups with equity participation, shall provide for the effective pursuit of innovative technologies in CCT and CCS with private sector interest. As the sustainable revenue oriented arm of the CCT – CCS cluster, the incubatee start-ups will bring in a rich dividend of innovative solutions for CCT and CCS niche markets and sustainability for the project initiatives and aims, in the long run. So, the cluster and its actions proposed in this project shall add new dimensions and momentum to CCT and CCS initiatives in India, through developing capacities, networks, dissemination, awareness, support and sustainability of the actions.
Planned Project Actions:
The activity spectrum planned for the project progressively addresses building up a new organizational structure in the form of a carbon cluster, with its hub located in Trichy.
The specific activities of the cluster are given below:
    • Launch and Management of Cluster Hub - For more info... Click here
    • Studies for knowledge generation and Deployment of Actions - For more info... Click here
    • Capacity Leverage Programmes in CCT and CCS - For more info... Click here
    • Benchmarking Learning Tours - For more info... Click here
    • Internships - For more info... Click here
    • Demonstration and Deployment development of CCT and CCS Project - For more info... Click here
    • Incubating Innovative Clean Tech Ventures – Private Sector Development - For more info... Click here
    • Documentation, Dissemination Platforms and Events - For more info... Click here

The proposed actions are planned to be completed within 36 months and sustained thereafter for continuous implementation of new initiatives in CCT-CCS areas for the benefit of the Indian power industry and for the society at large.